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34th Ward Ald. Carrie Austin is a co-chairwoman of the Chicago Football Classic / City of Chicago

34th Ward Ald. Carrie Austin is a co-chairwoman of the Chicago Football Classic / City of Chicago

The 19th Annual Chicago Football Classic (CFC), presented by Sherman Dodge Chrysler Jeep of Skokie and BMO Harris Bank, will take place at 3:30 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 10, at Soldier Field, 1410 Museum Campus Dr. Featuring a high-quality football game between two well-known historically black colleges and universities (HBCU), The Panthers of Clark-Atlanta University vs. the ‘Mighty Marauders’ of Central State University,  the Classic will also host a spirited and exciting roster pre kick-off events while continuing its dedication to provide Chicagoland high school students with opportunities to pursue a higher education.

“This is for the kids, to show them a brighter future. We want all of Chicago to show up on Sept 10 to help make this Classic event a success, so that more of our kids can go to college, rather than die on the streets,” emphasized Tim Rand, owner of MacOne Concessions and a CFC co-founder.

In short, the CFC has become a great annual family-oriented sports tradition and fall destination event for the city of Chicago. It also continues a strong tradition of excellence fostered by the nation’s 107 Historically Black Colleges and Universities.

This year, Mayor Rahm Emanuel has declared September 4-11 as “Historically Black College and University Week in Chicago,” and the Chicago Football Classic Scholarship Fund Inc.’s  Honorary Co-Chairs,  — 8th Ward Ald. Michelle Harris, 34th Ward Ald. Carrie Austin and 27th Ward Ald. Walter Burnett, are among the elected officials and community leaders once again actively involved in supporting the mission of the Classic.

The CFC is one of over 50 traditional football game and weeklong celebrations held between HBCUs across the nation. Since its inception in 1997, the  nonprofit, educationally focused Chicago Football  Classic has exposed loyal several generations of excited, loyal audiences  to several HBCUs who are invited to play in the game.

This year, Clark-Atlanta University (CAU) and Central State University (CSU) from Wilberforce, Ohio, will share the spotlight at Soldier Field. In addition to the football game, CFC produces the HBCU College Fair and Empowerment Summit, High School Battle of the Bands, pep rally, and, of course, pre-game tailgating is encouraged!

Nearly 20 years ago, successful local businessmen and community philanthropists Larry Huggins, Everett Rand and Tim Rand formed the Chicago Football Classic Scholarship Fund Inc. as a not-for-profit organization dedicated to encouraging African-American youth to achieve their personal best in school and beyond.

“Excellence is an important tradition in the Black community that must be encouraged and preserved for future generations,” said Huggins.

“It’s very important that we showcase these HBCU schools during this citywide event.… We are simply a group of people dedicated to not just public service but to young people and the neighborhoods. It’s very important that the aldermen, the mayor and everyone in this room support the Chicago Football Classic Scholarship Fund Inc.,” said Everett Rand at a recent gathering promoting the CFC.

“Nothing is more important to the achievement of all us in achieving our goals as a country and as a society than the education of our children. This is a great sporting event; most importantly, it’s about the dedication we all have to make sure that every child goes to college,” said Mayor Emanuel.

“In my community, one of biggest challenges facing children going to college and their families trying to make it happen is the money. So everything we can do to help families ensure these talented children go to college without risking the poor house is great,” remarked Alderman and CFC Co-Chairwoman Michelle Harris.

Ald. Carrie Austin, CFC Co-Chairwoman and long supporter of the event, also believes in the power of the Classic. “This is not about anyone of us. Let’s be clear — it’s about our children, and how we can transform their lives so that they can become productive adults,” said Austin.

What can YOU do to help? Come on out and bring some young people to experience the Classic!

Tickets are affordably priced at $17-$45 and are available at Midway Wholesalers, and Riteway Huggins, and Ticketmaster. Special promotional discounted Chicago Football Classic tickets are also available at Walgreens.

For more information on tickets or the events at the Classic, contact 773-874-8000, x. 4024 or 773-734-1600.  You can also purchase discounted Chicago Football Classic Scholarship Fund, Inc. tickets at local Walgreens stores. Go to www.chicagofootballclassic.biz, Like the “Chicago Football Classic” on FaceBook and follow on Twitter: @ChiFtblClassic.

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